‘We love homosexuals:’ Branson elders’ appeal generates interest

BRANSON, Mo. (BNC) — “We love homosexuals.” So begins a Facebook post by the elders of the Branson congregation which has generated hundreds of comments and over 3,000 shares.

The post, made by elders Blaine Orr and Tim Kidwell, affirms love for homosexuals at the same time it appeals for repentance from sin.

The elders explained why homosexuality is different from racial issues.

People have no decision over their race, but they do have the ability to abstain, or, commit sexual acts. Individuals can cease practicing homosexuality. Because God condemns homosexual acts, it is a sin and those who practice, or condone those who practice, such things will not go to heaven (Ro. 1:24-31; 1 Cor. 6:9-10; Lev. 20:13). God does not condemn what man cannot control.

The post made clear that it was passing on what God said about sin, rather than being a human judgment.

“We are willing to be accused of hate speech by those who hate God’s speech,” the post explained.

The entire text of the post is below.


 

To our friends and neighbors in Branson,

We love homosexuals. You read it correctly. The church of Christ in downtown Branson loves not only homosexuals, but also fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, sodomites, thieves, the covetous, drunkards, revilers, and extortioners. We love all unrighteous people. Why? Because we have also been guilty of unrighteousness (Rom. 3:23). But because God first loved the world (Jo. 3:16; 1 Jo. 4:19), He, by His grace, has taught us how to become righteous (Ti. 2:11-14). For this we should be eternally grateful and desire to share this soul saving information with others (Ro.1:16).

The issue of homosexuality and same sex marriage is a moral issue. God’s laws concerning morals are everlasting. Moral laws never change. It has always been wrong to kill, steal, commit adultery, practice homosexuality, etc. From the beginning of time marriage has always been one man and one woman for life (Gen. 2:24; Gen. 1:27-28; Rom. 7:2-3).

Homosexuality is not a civil issue. Comparing it to the treatment of different races is like comparing apples to oranges. It is not the same thing. People have no decision over their race, but they do have the ability to abstain, or, commit sexual acts. Individuals can cease practicing homosexuality. Because God condemns homosexual acts, it is a sin and those who practice, or condone those who practice, such things will not go to heaven (Ro. 1:24-31; 1 Cor. 6:9-10; Lev. 20:13). God does not condemn what man cannot control.

The practice of homosexuality is not genetic. It is a learned behavior. No reputable scientific study has drawn any other conclusion. We know that this message is not popular in today’s changing culture. But God has not changed (Mal. 3:6). Therefore we have no choice but to speak what God has spoken, regardless of what man may deem right or lawful (Acts 5:29).

It is not unloving, mean spirited, prejudice, hateful or unrighteous judgment to oppose sin. To speak where God has spoken is not passing wrongful human judgment (Mat. 7:1). To speak where God has spoken is to use righteous judgment (Jo. 7:24). We are only repeating what THE JUDGE (Ja. 4:12) has already proclaimed.

We do not expect people who respect man’s wisdom over God’s wisdom to agree with our stance (Isa. 55:8; 1 Cor. 1:25; 3:9). We do expect to be judged and, if possible, punished/persecuted by those who disagree with our sharing of God’s judgment (Jo. 15:20). Nevertheless, we refuse to be silent concerning issues that will affect a person’s soul.

Those who practice homosexuality have souls. Those who condone the practice of homosexuality have souls. God is not willing that any should perish (2 Pet. 3:9). Therefore, because we strive to have the mind of Christ and be imitators of Him, (1 Cor. 11:1; Phil. 2:5), we also do not want those who practice homosexuality or those who condone its practice to be lost.

We, the church of Christ in downtown Branson, refuse to be numbered with the silent majority. God is not silent. Therefore, neither will we be! Because God desires the repentance of those who practice unrighteousness, we are willing to be accused of hate speech by those who hate God’s speech (John 17:17).
Are you living the life of the unrighteous? We love you, but our love for you is not capable of making you righteous. Only your obedience to God’s teaching can save you (Mat. 7:21). And it is because of God’s love for all people that no matter what transgressions any of us may have committed, the blood of Jesus can wash those sins away, if only we obey the gospel of Jesus Christ (Rom. 8:1; Gal. 3:27; Rev. 2:10).

“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? … And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:9-11).

Come to Jesus. He will save you!

Elders for the Branson church of Christ,
Blaine Orr and Tim Kidwell

307 7th Street
Branson, MO 65616
417-334-3866

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us

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18 Comments

  1. Francia

    I agree completely!

  2. Joe Darrell Gibbs

    That was the approach of Jesus! He loves man in any condition! I did not read the entire article but I applaud these elders. My daddy used to say: ” We don’t hate SIN; we hate MEN”! Homosexuality has been in the church ( and is now) and many have embraced it without the emphasis on repentance. This church is the tip of the iceberg of the way so many others Christians feel but they are are afraid.

    In Christian Love,
    Joe D. Gibbs, Sr., M.A.

  3. These elders are to be commended for their courage in righteousness! May every church of Christ do likewise! We love the sinner, but hate the sin; and we have all been sinners (Those who practice sin as a manner of life.), but God in his love has called us to repent (Acts 17:30-31), to have a change of mind; thus, a change of life. Homosexuality is a learned behavior and a person can stop doing it, as is drunkenness and other sins. Some are harder to stop than others, but with the help of those who love the sinner, it can be done. May the churches of Christ stand ready to help!

  4. Ernestine Pace

    Excellent post. God’s Word is everlasting.

  5. I totally support what these elders are doing. Will this make a difference? Probably not. However remember Jeremiah was told that the Jews would not receive God’s message even before he delivered it to them. Yet he faithfully proclaimed that message. We are not responsible for how people respond to truth. We are responsible to present the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

  6. Earl Ash

    These brethren are examples for all leaders in the Lord’s church! Well done brothers, well done!

  7. Bill Cartwright

    I would add my amen but greater is your reward at our resurrection than all the words i can speak..what a blessings you are to the body of Christ Bill Cartwright

  8. Thank you for taking a stand. This will be forwarded to as many people I know. God bless you and prayers for you and your church family to keep it up.

  9. Ted Mitchel

    It takes great courage to take a stand such as this. PRAISE GOD that He has given these elders such courage! May we all take note of their example and FOLLOW it!

  10. Pertaining to the recent decision of the U.S. Supreme Court regarding marriage; the Branson church of Christ in Branson, Missouri, publicly declares their established rules concerning any and all marriages conducted by any representative of the church, whether on or off the property owned by the church at 307 7th Street.
    No person will be considered a candidate for marriage, no matter their sex, unless they are a member of the Branson church of Christ. Those who desire to become a member of the Branson church of Christ must first meet the requirements for church membership as established by God in the New Testament in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost in A.D. 33 (John 3:16; Romans 10:9-10, 2 Pet. 3:9; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38).
    Anyone who fails to meet all the requirements of church membership, as taught in the New Testament according to the interpretation of the Branson church of Christ elders, will not be considered a candidate for marriage by anyone representing the Branson church, or on property owned by the church. Anyone who meets the requirements for membership, regardless of sex, will not be forbidden marriage by the church.
    Persons interested in further explanation concerning church membership should call the church office at, (417) 334-3866 to make an appointment with the minister.
    For the Branson church of Christ,
    Blaine Orr – Elder
    Tim Kidwell – Elder

  11. Linn Carter

    Amen. God Bless!

  12. Mark Jennette

    That’s about as loving, truthful, and eloquent as anyone can put it.

  13. James s. Parker

    A great way to put this issue. Thank you for standing up for the truth!

  14. heather

    EXCELLENT DELIVERY!! GOD said this. thank you for the message! this is exactly what i wish people would open their eyes to see, but for some reason theyre hung up on believing that we hate them or fear them. may many be saved and many hearts softened.

  15. “We love homosexuals” Facebook Stats update as of Thursday, July 9, 2015. 1,106,944 people reached. 32,086 likes. 6,267 comments. 9,031 shares. 311,824 clicked on post. 1,542 (negative feedback). To God be the glory. Branson church of Christ.

  16. Robert Jubela

    Good statement of the “true” believers’ position founded on God’s Word. Will share this with our congregation. Robert Jubela, elder, Boerne Church of Christ, Boerne,TX

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